Whirl of Art
Art Towers by city: 
Alma de Familia of San Antonio TX                 

"Alma de Familia" was conceived by visionary artists associated with the regional burner community of San Antonio, TX. The name "Alma," translating to "soul" in Spanish, is apt for this art piece as it mirrors the very essence of cultural and artistic contributions made by the creators.

The installation revolves around a representation of Spanish colonial missions that transformed the region in the 1700s. These missions mark the beginning of the melding of cultures that is still a defining characteristic of  modern San Antonio. The theme of this art piece visually represents San Antonio's rich history, renowned for housing the oldest buildings in Texas.

Some of the most important and prominently featured elements of the piece are sculptures designed and created by local artists representing their own respective cultures. The Indigenous, Chicano, and Mexican cultures of San Antonio are extremely influential and honored by the city. The indigenous inspired sculpture is influenced by images from Mayan culture, as well as by elements from the individual tribes that occupy this region of Texas. A sculpture of a proud woman with her arm raised and dressed in traditional clothing will represent Chicano culture and its ties to feminism and activism. Pre-colonial Mexican culture is still proudly celebrated throughout the city and will be represented by an amalgamation of images from traditional holidays.

When the nearby merry-go-round spins, the 3 large mission bells ring, sending their message across the playa. At night, spotlights projected inside the mission make it appear to glow from within, casting a mesmerizing blend of shadows and lights onto the moving bells. This interactive feature invites viewers to engage with the artwork, providing an opportunity to experience the vitality of the city's history, deeply intertwined with the soul of San Antonio.

The mission is positioned atop a box adorned with carved-out and painted imagery on all sides, symbolizing the multicultural and accepting nature of the city's people, its history, and its present. Torches illuminate the surroundings at night, guiding the way to the entrances. Inside, a blend of modern visionary art and paintings in the traditional style encapsulates the duality within the city's artist community, renowned for its prolific street art and appreciation for old methods. One of the walls is dedicated to an Ofrenda, a family altar, symbolizing family as the cornerstone of San Antonio's existence throughout its history and cultural blend.

"Alma de Familia" is not merely an art installation; it is a thoughtful reflection of San Antonio's unique multicultural identity, a testament to the city's old spirit, and a heartfelt homage to its roots.

Design ideas for the walls

ARTful Minds Collective

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